At SHOT Show next week, Federal Ammunition will display its new expanding .380 auto ammunition, which the bullet maker pledges to be the first of its kind to consistently meet FBI protocol recommendations for penetrating at least 12 inches through bare ballistic gelatin as well as through heavy clothing.
"In response to the growing popularity of ultra-compact handguns by citizens of all ages, genders and demographics -- particularly among shooters looking for a downsized yet effective defender -- Federal Premium has expanded its award-winning Hydra-Shok Deep lineup with a new 99-grain .380 Auto load," according to a Jan. 14 news release from Federal.
In tests, bullets were shot through materials such as 10% ordnance gelatin, laminated automotive safety glass, plywood, wallboard and heavy clothing specified by the FBI," Federal Handgun Ammunition Product Manager Chris Laack said in the release.
"While our larger caliber ammunition is designed to meet and exceed these requirements, the smaller .380 Auto is designed to offer the best possible blend of performance in a compact handgun platform," Laack said.
Testing showed typical results of up to 13.5 inches of penetration in bare gel and up to 14 inches through heavy clothing, the release states. Test gun barrel lengths were from common, compact handguns ranging from 2.75 inches to 3.5 inches. The bullet and load are also fine-tuned to ensure delivery of consistent performance across all handgun platforms to stay within that 13-inch to 14-inch goal range, according to the release.
"These are achievements the industry has never seen before in the .380 Auto cartridge," the release states.
The new Hydra-Shok Deep .380 will be on display at Federal's booth at SHOT Show 2020, which runs Jan. 21-24 at the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas. Federal plans to have the new ammunition ready to ship some time this spring. It's slated to retail for about $26 for a 20-round box.
-- Matthew Cox can be reached at email@example.com.